Are ferrets haram?
July 12, 2016 11:55 AM   Subscribe

Kids living around us are fascinated by the occasional time we have taken our ferrets for a walk. A few of them have asked whether ferrets are haram. Not knowing, I've suggested that they ask their parents but would like to be able to tell them next time. Google suggests that they are ok but I can't find any more substantive sources than yahoo answers. Thanks!
posted by threetwentytwo to Religion & Philosophy (8 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: From
The seventh principle is that all terrestrial predatory animals and beasts, i.e. animals that hunt with their teeth, are considered Haram, such as a lion, cheetah, tiger, leopard, wolf, fox, dog, cat, etc.
Ferrets are predatory, so should be Haram. They also specifically mention weasels as being Haram.
posted by Etrigan at 12:11 PM on July 12, 2016 [2 favorites]

Best answer: My family is Muslim. I can't conceive of what they mean by that as haram/halal (forbidden/allowed) refers to the consumption of certain animals (pigs, specifically.) If a dog's saliva touches any part of the body, a Muslim is expected to wash a certain way before they perform their prayers. Some cultures have misinterpreted these guidelines as something stricter than it is, which is sad.

My family is pretty conservative, so I grew up with an extensive knowledge of animals in Islam. It's haram for consumption, but as pets, they're fine.
posted by Everydayville at 12:13 PM on July 12, 2016 [8 favorites]

I'm personally interpreting that question as being about animals that religious law allows you to keep as pets. If so, ferrets are AOK.
posted by capricorn at 12:19 PM on July 12, 2016

Response by poster: Interesting, thanks! The kids seem to be wanting to (but wary of) petting them- not eating them. These kids would be around 4-7 so perhaps slightly confusing the issue with dogs etc?
posted by threetwentytwo at 12:22 PM on July 12, 2016

Best answer: The kids seem to be wanting to (but wary of) petting them

I would strongly advise you to defer to the parents rather than telling the kids that your Internet friends assure you it's okay to pet them. If their parents are of the ilk who believe that haram status extends to keeping/petting, it is not your place to upend that.
posted by Etrigan at 12:27 PM on July 12, 2016 [20 favorites]

They've probably been told not to touch dogs, so you can tell them the ferrets aren't haram. Their parents, however, may feel differently about it so perhaps add that they should check with their parents first? I wouldn't want some irate parent asking you where you got your information and that ferrets are deemed haram. They're not, but... religious people can be weird. Sigh.
posted by Everydayville at 12:29 PM on July 12, 2016 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Absolutely, Etrigan. Sorry, should have made that clear- more for my own curiosity than anything. Fuzzies aren't great for petting in general!
posted by threetwentytwo at 12:29 PM on July 12, 2016

I agree about offering them for petting or play. As someone who lived with lots of ferrets for 20 years, I would be extremely wary of letting kids (other than your own) interact with your ferrets except as strictly limited and personally supervised by you. Especially when a religious component might become involved. Even the most loving of ferrets can be pretty bitey -- and that's in circumstances where they are being handled appropriately by people they know.
posted by slkinsey at 2:18 PM on July 12, 2016

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